At the start of the Elizabethtown school board’s workshop meeting, Superintendent Michele Balliet read a statement regarding charges filed against former high school music teacher Cody Floyd, whose resignation was accepted at the May 16 board meeting.
Balliet read the statement at the meeting held the evening of Tuesday, Aug. 8. Floyd was charged earlier that day with corruption of minors, and Elizabethtown Area School District officials were made aware of the charges.
Balliet said in April, school staff shared information on the situation with district administration, which in turn notified local authorities. Floyd was asked for his resignation and he immediately gave it, she said.
Balliet commended the staff who brought the information forward as well as the local police and district attorney’s office. The district will continue to cooperate with the investigation, Balliet said, adding that the district will give no further comments on the matter.
During the meeting, business manager George Longridge gave an update on bus transportation, saying no new buses have been added, but that six buses serving Rheems and Bainbridge elementary schools will have revised routes. Because of an extensive renovation project at Bainbridge Elementary, those students will attend Rheems this year. Longridge was happy to report that the longest ride time for a Bainbridge student, originally projected to be over an hour, will now be about 45 minutes.
In all, more than 2,800 students will be transported by bus, with about another 1,000 students walking to school, Longridge said. The bus schedules are still a work in progress, he noted, with the transportation team trying to improve ride times for about 35 to 40 Bear Creek School students affected by bridge construction. Longridge said the finalized routes would be presented for approval at the Aug. 15 board meeting, and letters would be sent to parents the next day.
Addressing the board about bus transportation were Josh and Jackie Peters of Governor Stable Road, Elizabethtown, whose 6-year-old daughter will be in first grade. The couple asked that their daughter be picked up at the Conoy Township park on Governor Stable Road, about a quarter mile from Turnpike Road.
A spot on Turnpike Road was originally the assigned stop, but transportation officials agreed with the parents that the area, which drops off into what Josh Peters called a “blind hill,” was too dangerous. However, the officials want the pickup to be on Keener Road, which the parents say is 0.7 miles from their driveway, with several hills and no shoulders or sidewalks.
“I think that is way too much to ask, especially for a young child, to walk that far to catch the bus,” Josh Peters said.
The transportation officials were concerned about getting a bus to the park when it snows, but Peters said that in case of heavy snow, school would be closed anyway, and that the township typically plows that road the same day.
Board president Terry Seiders said the issue would be further discussed with the transportation director.
Also, Mark Gallick of McClure Co. and Jay Franklin of NRG gave an update on a solar panel field proposed for district land between Route 283, Bear Creek School and the Elizabethtown Fairgrounds. Gallick said that the design for a 500-kilowatt field was essentially completed, including an upgraded fence as requested by the municipality. But the “one hiccup” is that PPL has yet to give its official blessing to the plan, which is estimated to cost about $870,000 and save the district over $2 million over a 20-year period. But project engineers have had input from PPL, and Gallick and Franklin see no reason why the plan won’t be approved. The board will consider the plan next week.
The board also switched to action mode to approve the personnel report, which includes the hiring of Jason Potts as the new high school assistant principal. Potts, who has served in the Marines, was at the meeting.